How Dance Gathering 2018 overwhelmed spectators on broad street

Performance at Dance Gathering

The city of Lagos was recently in a celebratory mood as the yearly Dance Gathering 2018 was held on Broad Street, one of the most ancient and popular streets on the Lagos Island. Well over 3,000 people were in attendance to see the novelty of dance as it was held on the streets.

The popular event was co-organised by popular dancer and artistic director of QDance Centre Lagos, Qudus Onikeku, and Onye Ozuzu – Dean of School of Fine and Performing Arts, Columbia College, Chicago, U.S. It had more than 500 artists participating for the event.

The festival, which was in its second edition, had as theme ‘Body and Memory,’ as it focuses on varied forms of writings that explore the body, as a storehouse of memories and inherited traumas while viewing the body as a prized possession that acts as both a battlefield and space for freedom. It also highlights memory as an element of healing and restoration that goes beyond set limitations and communicate them in non-verbal form, verbal form and also in performance.

Dance Gathering 2018 began with workshops and master classes held by the co-curators and other resource persons. These took place between February 12 and 17. Then came the congregation of different professionals in the creative art industry, who spoke on challenges of the creative industry; they also proffered solutions to these challenges.

The celebration reached its climax on the final weekend as participants took over Broad Street and publicly showcased skills and creativity to the local and international audience. Some of the fascinating activities include individual and group chorography, live band performances, paintings, musical performances, cultural dances, poetry, and drama among others. The performers were both local and international artistes.

International spectators joined local audience in appreciating the breath-taking performances of the artists. The merry-making lasted deep into the night, but the lively audience was obviously not keen to go home and the performers were as adroit, as ever as they kept on giving their best while the audience cheered them on.

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Qudus Onikeku

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